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Adams a12OS Iron Review
Review by: Editor tbowles411
Before I get started, I want to thank GolfWrx and Adams Golf for the opportunity to not only review, but receive a set of the 2012 a12OS hybrids and irons to review and keep. I got them a couple of days ago, and owed it to them and everyone to get out and review a their new set of hybrids and irons before they are due to be released, if even by a few days. I hope I can help prospective buyers out with their purchase and answer any questions they may have. This is definitely an awesome site to be affiliated with and am very grateful they trust me and my opinions. I’ve used Adams irons in the past (most recently the V3 in front of the TMaG guys BTW), and know the brand pretty well. For the record, they were pretty impressed with the V3 hybrid as I was hitting shot after shot out of a divot on the range.
I chose graphite stiff irons. Having back issues I HAD to have graphite to prevent the shock of impact on the ground. They had Grafalloy ProLaunch Blue, 65g shafts in them.
Honestly, at first I didn’t know what to think. I inspected them pretty closely. The more I looked at them, the more I liked them. As true in the OS line of previous years, these are for 20+ handicappers, beginners, for those who just like the SGI look and feel and for those weekend warriors who get out once a month or so and smack the little white ball around. You can definitely see the help. The cavities are deep, the weighting is very low and made and make almost any hit, good or bad, go virtually arrow straight (more on that in a minute). The offset isn’t massive. It’s there. But it’s not Ping massive. And let’s be honest, offset is getting a bum rap here on the Wrx. But if people didn’t need it to help them be successful, it wouldn’t be there. I’m one of those guys at a 24 handicap, I need offset, am and not ashamed to admit it, but it was good that it wasn’t huge, IMO.
The irons are big, but again, not so large where it looks like a boat paddle, and the soles are wide enough to help prevent the great majority of fat shots. Again, remember who these are geared to. The top line is THICK. The club screams, “I’m going to hit the poo out of the ball.”
As for the hybrids, these are classic Adams. They’re made to get the ball up and out. Not fancy, but these are made to work and they didn’t disappoint. For folks who worry about the Velocity slot, once you start hitting them, you don’t see it. For me at least, it disappeared. The size of the hybrids are pretty large in the 4 hybrid and get smaller when you get to the 5 and 6. This is for forgiveness no doubt. You’d also think there would be more offset in the hybrids. Not so much. Yes, there is some, but not quite as much as you might think.
The feel of the irons is solid. No, it’s not forged, so forget that, but they do have a solid feel, but not quite as soft as I might have hoped. But again, these aren’t forged, and aren’t trying to be. There’s a bit of weight to them, I’d prefer a little heavier, but that’s a personal preference. The hybrids are equally solid. Again, I’d prefer them to be a little heavier, but they’re both made for distance, I’m sure. Make them lighter, and a solid strike makes them go farther, I get it. The sound of these are also solid. Not loud or soft. Nothing special that would stand out in either way.
This is where the rubber meets the road for me. I’ve played the V3 irons and hybrids, so that was in my head while playing with these on each shot.
The irons simply go straight. “Working the ball” should not be in your mind. The irons want to fly high and straight. I tried to cut the ball. No, it’s not going to do it very easily. It doesn’t want to so don’t ask it. Being Golfwrx I know many of you will want to lower the flight. There will be options to do that by changing shafts, but maintaining the forgiveness factor. But the stock graphite and I imagine the steel as well, these simply fly straight. And it was actually nice to see. As far as accuracy, these are point and shoot. There are better shafts out there for sure, but these are not bad. The irons make the ball land soft, with a little release, but for me, not much to speak of. A very solid effort, I must say.
The hybrids are another story altogether. I’ll start with the velocity slot. The slot works. The strikes were solid and the hype about the slots, is warranted. The ball comes off very quick, and high. I had never really used it extensively. I hit it before, but I didn’t appreciate it as much as I do now. The term “rocket ship” came to mind. I was impressed on how far it flew and how easy it was to hit. The 4 hybrid and I made friends very quickly. I had a 230 yard Par 3 that always eats my lunch. The thing just fired the ball high and with plenty of distance. I aimed for the center of the green and I put it 30 feet to the pin. Needless to say I was impressed…before I three putted! LOL Hey, I said I was a 24 handicap! But it was a better result than I usually have, with a little less club than I normally use.
From the fairway, these border on special. If you put a solid strike on these, you’re going to be a little awestruck, at least I was. You’ll be rewarded with high and arrow straight flight. If you put a less than solid strike, it will be a pretty decent result. Again, arrow straight, but this is where the velocity slot helps bail you out. You’ll not lose much distance because the ball is coming off quicker. You will lose SOME, but not as much. Speed = distance. I currently use TaylorMade SF 2.0 hybrids. I can hear them now: They’re worried and have every right to be. These are more forgiving and feel every bit as solid, if not more so. Period. If you want to lower the flight, get a different shaft, but out of the box, I was very, VERY impressed. Ball.Go.Far. Again, these do not want to be worked much, but I got a little cut action out of it. But these simply want to go straight.
I’m a bump and run guy. I learned years ago, get it on the ground as fast as possible and start it rolling like a putt, especially when you have a lot of ground to cover. I grabbed the irons and hybrids to try some different things around and on the greens, ala Todd Hamilton and such. You have to be a little careful with finesse shots with the irons. With the soles being wider, you’ll get forgiveness on a mishit, but you just need to make sure your technique is sound. After a couple of tries, it became old hat. I liked the fact I could pull off these shots in my game with something on the wider side. Chipping with a hybrid was easy too. Another benefit of the velocity slot gave me a bit more speed to the strike and allowed me to take a shorter back action with the club. If it gets away from you, it will fire past your target. However, these will definitely help the higher handicapper add those dimensions to their game. Also, sometimes when you’re in a bunker, a wedge is NOT the right play when you have to run it after hitting the green. I tried a shot that I had been using with these. I took an 8 iron out of the sand when I had to have enough loft to get out, but needed it to navigate the green. I pulled it off with “less” than great contact because the soles bailed me out. This shot can be accomplished with any iron, but I was impressed nonetheless. But you have to PRACTICE THESE!
For what the a12OS is, they are a very solid effort, definitely worthy of your attention and consideration. As far as hybrids, Adams rules the roost for a reason. They just perform. These do a job for that higher capper to have success and enjoy the game more. That’s what it’s all about. They’ll have success with these and hopefully a little less frustration. The irons are very solid as well with help that is evident to help the golfer get the ball up and out in the right direction. No, they’re not going to prevent a sh*** or fix a hook, but what they will do is allow you to get away with those mistakes more often. Not every shot is crisp and clean. You want to maximize your time on the course and get away with as much as possible when your game is not so nice to you. Stock shafts will work for most people, but I might suggest going heavier in them for more control, and not straight up distance. It’s not a slight, just a hacker’s recommendation. The stiff shafts I chose allowed me to keep control of the ball, but I know there are at least a half dozen choices of graphite shafts I would recommend in order to promote the feel and flight I like. And if you do, please do not charge a huge upcharge to do so. Even high handicappers want to hit a ball like Tom Watson or Bam Bam Lincicome sometimes.
I enjoyed hitting these, I really did. Will I keep these? I’m not sure yet, but I know my SF 2.0 hybrid will have a run for it’s money for sure with that a12OS 4 hybrid. Again, thanks to Golfwrx, and Adams Golf for the opportunity and for allowing me to play and review them.
Golfwrx…accept no subsititutes!